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AFIO Weekly Intelligence Notes #40-99, 8 Oct 1999

WINs are produced by Roy Jonkers for AFIO members and subscribers. This WIN is largely based on articles submitted by Dr. John Macartney, Associate WIN Editor, and by Prof. Heibel's college group.

Although WINs are protected by copyright laws, WIN #40-99 MAY BE DISSEMINATED for purposes of (1) interesting potential new AFIO members and (2) publicizing the AFIO National Symposium.

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ANNOUNCEMENT: Henceforth the WINs will be sent out in two parts. The Bulletin Board section, containing items such as conference agendas, member quesries, employment notices, obits etc. will be sent out separately as AFIO Bulletin Board Notices. WIN #40-99 therefore only contains three sections.


We still have some empty seats - - and want to fill them all! SUPPORT AFIO - - Check your rolodex or address file! --- Guests (US citizens) you refer can attend the Symposium (and the Convention as well) at AFIO-MEMBER RATES ($165), LARGELY TAX-DEDUCTIBLE.

For Agenda and Registration information, check the AFIO website at

Contact or for more information.

NOTE: The transmittal of this WIN has been jinxed - this is the third attempt in three days - trust it will go through. Server changed the rules. RoyJ.

AFIO AWARDS BANQUET - - An eminent national journalist will be awarded AFIO's newly established Stewart Alsop Award, recognizing sustained excellence as well as balance in reporting on national security and intelligence-related news and issues. The AFIO Honorary Board members have been invited. Eminent top rank national leaders, including Ambassador Richard Helms and others, will attend the Reception and Awards Banquet at the Marriott Hotel. We still have room ($105)!


US EXPANDS INTELLIGENCE SUPPORT IN EAST TIMOR - - The United States is beefing up its intelligence support for the Australian-led peacekeeping contingent in East Timor. The Pentagon recently sent seven more intelligence officials to Darwin, the jumping off point for the peacekeepers in East Timor, to assist Australian intelligence. Another 27 Americans are being dispatched, also to Darwin, ''in support of special intelligence requirements.'' Further, a six-man special communications team from Hawaii is heading to the area to provide secure communications and unspecified ''specialized intelligence" capabilities. Also, Australia is now getting support from the U.S. Joint Intelligence Center (JIC) in Hawaii. US support to the East Timor operation will be primarily in the form of intelligence and logistics support.

After visiting East Timor in late September and discussing the situation with Australian officials, SecDef Cohen also discussed East Timor and other topics, such as the efforts to repair U.S.-China relations, during stops in Thailand, Singapore and the Philippines. Thailand is the second-biggest contributor of troops to the East Timor operation, behind Australia, and has a long-standing military relationship with the United States. (9/29, AP Online, Robert Burns, Cairns, Australia) (Courtesy RHeibel (RoyJ)

AIR CAMPAIGN AGAINST IRAQ CONTINUES -- Airstrikes by US and other NATO aircraft (primarily UK) against Iraq continue almost daily in a war in which the civilian casualties are neither counted nor publicized in US media, but are widely reported in the world press and foreign mass media. US and British air strikes against selected targets from predetermined lists are executed daily, in response to perceived or reputed radar emanations attributed to Iraqi air defense radars. The imputed purpose of this bombing campaign is to keep the Iraqi military on edge, weaken the civic infrastructure and destabilize the regime. The overthrow of Saddam Hussein is a mandated and public objective of the US government. Recently, in order to lessen "collateral damage," that is, civilian casualties (and the attendant negative world media publicity), US aircraft are reported to have begun using laser guided "smart bombs" filled with cement - rather than high explosives - against some targets located in densely built up areas. (JdMac, RoyJ)

INTELLIGENCE IMPACTS ON POLITICS. A Bill Gertz column in the Washington Times last week (10/1/99) attributed to US intelligence a finding that Russia (probably or possibly) conducted two clandestine underground nuclear tests last month, on the 8th and the 13th of September. While DIA was reported as saying they were "probably" nuclear tests, CIA only spoke of "possible" tests. The key conclusion inferred, however, was that US intelligence could not, with absolute certainty, differentiate underground low yield nuclear explosions from conventional explosions. This intelligence "leak"and conclusion was fortuitously timed to support the opponents of ratifying the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) - - - an interesting example of the interplay between Intelligence, Leaks and Politics in Washington.

The finding may have prompted Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott, opposed to the treay, to bring it to the floor (after bottling it up for 2 years) for ratification, certain that it would be defeated in light of CIA's reported statement that such tests could not be absolutely verified. After some further backroom work, the Treaty this week seemed on its way to oblivion via delay - - deferred until 2001, after the next presidential elections. (JdMac & RoyJ)

IRAQ ACTIVATES FOREIGN INTELLIGENCE SPECIAL ACTION NETWORKS - - - The Iraqi Communist Party (not the most credible source in the world) asserted last Thursday (9/30) that Saddam Hussein's regime has decided to reactivate its intelligence/special operations networks abroad, with the intent of harassing or even assassinating leading Iraqi dissidents and opponents. The decision to reinvigorate the networks was reportedly made at a meeting of Iraqi intelligence officers in Baghdad on September 16th, convened to by Qusai Hussein, Saddam's younger son, who oversees the regime's security and intelligence departments. Qusai was quoted to the effect that the special action networks ''should do every thing possible to prevent the opposition's activities," including infiltrating the groups and assassinating their leaders. The special action networks are to be supervised by Sabah Nouri Hilal al-Tikriti, chief of the Special Branch the Intelligence Department. (10/1, AP Worldstream, CAIRO, Egypt) (Courtesy R. Heibel (RoyJ)


US - CHINA INTELLIGENCE - - Commentator Walter Pincus finally wrote about an aspect of the US-China spy imbroglio that has not seen much commentary in the heated anti-China political rhetoric, and provides another dimension of intelligence and national politics. According to Pincus, US intelligence has benefitted significantly from exchange visits with Chinese nuclear scientists, and from Chinese launches of US-built satellites. By no means has it been a one-way street. At the beginning of the 80's the US knew little about China's nuclear weapons and missiles, but years of exchanges have gradually filled in the blanks.

Richard Kerr, former Deputy DCI (and a speaker at the AFIO Symposium), who spent one year as part of a panel reviewing allegations of Chinese espionage at America's nuclear labs, stated that "we got more our of those Chinese visits than they got." The launching of US-built satellites on Chinese launchers has also been advantageous to the US, revealing important details on rocket functioning and Chinese launch monitoring procedures, including telemetry and other electronic signals. Since much of this is now encrypted - - it has becomne a "black art" - - the on-the-ground experiences filled important gaps. =46or example, when China tested its new DF-31 mobile missile last month, CIA and Defense Intelligence already knew a great deal about the rocket and its proposed warhead. Richard Kerr holds that scientific exchanges should continue, even though there has not as yet been a formal "net assessment" of gains versus losses. DOE is planning to undertake such an analysis. Meanwhile, a balanced view - which does not overlook shortcomings in our security, but does not go hysterical, and does not throw out the baby with the bathwater, is most useful. (WPost,Oct11, p. A2) (RoyJ)

NORTH KOREAN WEAPONS IMPORTS - - North Korea has imported $156 million worth of weapons since 1995 despite severe food shortages and economic difficulties, according to the South Korean Defense Ministry. Most of the weapons came from Kazakstan and other former Soviet republics, and China.

The isolated, communist North spent $12 million this year to buy 40 Soviet-designed MiG-21 fighter planes and eight helicopters from Kazakstan and Russia - - a real steal. Kazakstan inherited a large number of combat jets and other military equipment after the 1991 Soviet collapse and has peddled excesses on world arms market at bargain rates. The United States denounced the deal and reportedly threatened to cut $75 million in annual aid to Kazakstan as punishment. In response, the Kazak government fired its defense minister and the chairman of the State Security Committee in July, stating the MiG-21's had been sold illegally to North Korea.

In 1998, North Korea spent $2.78 million on explosives, tank engines and military blankets from China, $ 2.6 million on ammunition and anti-air artillery pieces from Kazakstan, $3.15 million on tank engines and batteries from Slovakia,and $ 43 million on helicopters and trucks from Russia. North Korea also purchased 6,000 diving suits from Japan in 1996. Such suits were found on the dead bodies of North Korean agents killed while infiltrating South Korea by submarine in recent years.

Since 1995, North Korea has been largely dependent on foreign aid to feed its people, and the famine has already taken 2 million lives, by some estimates. Earlier this month, North Korea promised to suspend test-launches of its long-range missiles after the United States lifted some of its economic sanctions on the communist state. (9/29, AP Worldstream, SEOUL, South Korea, citing South Korean Defense Ministry report to National Assembly.) (courtesy Heibel (RoyJ)

FRENCH (Italian & Spanish) AND JAPANESE SPY SATELLITES. France plans to launch its first advanced Helios II reconnaissance ("spy") satellites in 2003, with a second to follow in 2007 or 2008. Like the US, France is also assessing the costs and benefits of partly replacing Helios with civilian commercial imagery. Helios II spy satellites will replace the current Helios 1 spacecraft and provide France, Italy and Spain with military imagery.

Meanwhile, Japan has announced that US companies will be given a chance to compete for part of the business of building Japan's planned reconnaissance satellites.

=46or other information regarding government satellite imaging capabilities vs. those of the private sector , check URL

or come to the AFIO Symposium "Intelligence 2000", where the President of Space Imaging, former NRO Director Jeffrey Harris, will discuss the issue. (JdMac)

PREDATOR OVER KOSOVO. No matter where Serb forces moved in Kosovo, they

were under the eye of NATO forces. Pilots sitting in ground control vans hundreds of miles away kept cameras and other sensing devices trained on Serb forces through use of the Predator unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). Predators collected intelligence, searched for targets and kept cameras aimed at Kosovar-Albanian refugees.

The Predator -- - also known as the Medium Altitude Endurance Unmanned Aerial Vehicle -- - has a wingspan of 48 feet, a length of 26 feet and weighs about 1,500 pounds when fully fueled. It flies around 90 miles per hour. Each costs about $3.2 million. The Predator can stay in the air for 40 hours, loitering over dangerous areas. It sends back video images of what it is observing. Pilots "flew" the Predators from vans at their base. They were all rated pilots, who in the real world fly C-141 Starlifters, KC-135 tankers, B-52 bombers, U-2s or AWACS aircraft. They flew Predator remotely by using controls found in a normal cockpit.

DoD officials will use the information they have gained from the Predator operations to build the next generation of recon UAVs. The possibility for UAV fighter and bomber roles is also being explored. Next up is the $10 million jet-powered Global Hawk. Made by Teledyne Ryan, Global Hawk will be bigger and fly higher and faster than the Predator. Global Hawk will fly for 40-hours and will have a 3,000-mile range and 65,000-foot ceiling. In a July 6 memo, Defense Secretary William S. Cohen said DoD must aggressively push the requirements and acquisition process for Global Hawk. (Jim Garamone, American Forces Press Service ( Articles 21 Sep 99) (JdMac)

CIA NOC OFFICER SUES AGENCY. A female CIA operations officer assigned to the agency's Non-Official Cover (NOC) program has filed suit in federal court alleging that CIA managers destroyed her career after learning that one of the foreign "assets" she was managing kissed her on the lips in a hotel room, an action the agency saw as a potential security breach. (JdMac)

BRITISH UNIVERSITY PROF A STASI SPY - - Robin Pearson, a University of Hull lecturer and specialist in class struggle and German economic history, was named on 17 September as having been an agent for the East German STASI security police from 1977 until 1989 . He was recruited during a student trip to Leipzig in 1977.

MI5 identified him in the early '90's from the STASI files they had obtained (and NOT from the KGB files purloined by Vasili Mitrokhin and published in his current book written with Christopher Andrew). The STASI apparently often targeted academics and "opinion-formers". Professor David Childs, author of "The Stasi: The East German Intelligence and Security Service," was quoted as saying that "Britain was not seen as one of their major targets, it was much easier to infiltrate West Germany, but they did want to get Britons, and were particularly after people they thought would rise up to positions of influence within the EU or NATO." (London Times, September 18 1999 , by =46arrell, Wilkinson and Evans) (Courtesy Ray Sanford) (RoyJ)


INTELLIGENCE: From Secrets to Policy, by Mark M. Lowenthal, CQ Press, Washington DC, 1999. ISBN 1-56802-512-2. This book just received, and only scanned, not read. Richard Kerr, former Deputy director of CIA, is quoted as saying about the book that "Mark Lowenthal has made a major contribution to the generally weak literature of intelligence. He explores the relationship between intelligence and policy - - one of the most perplexing and misunderstood." The book, published in paperback, is much more. It is also a primer on intelligence, clear in organization and, based on my sampling the pages, written in a readable, direct, concise style. To be further reviewed, but, at first glance, a winner. (RoyJ)

NSA DOCUMENTS. Recently received a flyer from Aegean Park Press of Laguna Hills, Calif, which offers some 73 newly declassified and released NSA publications with titles ranging from "Vatican Code Systems" (70 pages, $29) to "The Zimmerman Telegram of Jan 16, 1917 and Cryptographic Background" ($13). The flyer says that NSA recently released thousands of such documents and, the flyer states, " is astonishing that the US Government now admits and documents the 'breaking' and reading the codes of friendly nations." (JdMac)

MILITARY INTELLIGENCE PROFESSIONAL BULLETIN. The MIPB is published quarterly by the US Army Intelligence Center at Ft Huachuca, Arizona. It's unclassified and civilians may order subscriptions for only $7.50/year. More info and back issues can be found online at: (JdMac)

REPORT PREDICTS BLOODY TERRORISM ON US SOIL. The initial report of the U.S. Commission on National Security for the 21st Century (aka the Hart-Rudman Commission) was released to the public on 15 September. This report is available on line via the following URL: (JdMac)

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